Questions to ask

When you first speak to a mortgage adviser, you might like to ask some of these questions. They’ll help you explore the adviser’s range of services, and understand more about the processes involved in getting a mortgage.

It’s a good idea to contact a number of mortgage advisers before choosing one to help you with your finances.  This way, you’ll also get a ‘feel’ for the people you’ll be dealing with, which is important if you’re trusting them with something as important as the purchase of your dream house. 

Are you an independent adviser, or are you ‘tied’?

An independent mortgage adviser can offer you thousands of products, from many providers. Tied advisers can only recommend products and services from the provider they are tied to.  

Which qualifications do you hold?

A mortgage adviser should be happy to tell you which exams he or she has obtained. Independent financial advisers (IFAs) also offer mortgage advice, but they will need to hold specific mortgage qualifications to do so. 

What makes the mortgage you’re recommending the most suitable one?

Your circumstances are likely to be unique. It’s important to make sure that you’ve passed all relevant details on to your mortgage adviser, so that he or she can make a sound recommendation.  If you’re not sure about the product you’re being shown, ask to see alternatives.  Don’t worry about asking for an explanation of features or details, if there’s something you’re unsure about.

Are there any other mortgages I could look at?

Rates can change on a daily basis, and lenders can withdraw or add products to their range just as fast.  With thousands of options to choose from, your adviser will probably narrow the choice down as much as possible to offer the most suitable products with the best rates at the time. But if you’d like to consider alternatives, don’t be afraid to ask. 

How do you charge for your services?

It’s sometimes worth asking if your mortgage adviser is happy to negotiate on the cost of his or her advice.

Can you source ‘direct deals’?

‘Direct deals’ are those products with ‘special rates’, extra features, or discounts, offered by high street lenders, usually through a bank or a building society.  Independent mortgage advisers don’t always have access to these deals, so it’s worth asking about them.

Do you offer any other services?

Many mortgage advisers offer advice on building and contents insurance, and other forms of general insurance. These products are well worth considering, as they often complement your mortgage product and can be bought at preferential rates.